Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ouch: Back me up Scotty!

While I can't be transported back to the moment, I did it — I assure you I learned a valuable lesson.

I need a back up plan for my email and my digital files.

Last week, I attempted to clean out my email account files and deleted 40 percent of the capacity in the account.
I eliminated almost all of my story ideas, titles, thoughts, etc.
that I had emailed to myself over the last two years. 

In the days of home phones, I used to call my voice mail and leave notes to myself to transcribe later.

With an iPhone, I email notes to myself.

Since my son arrived, I've sent hundreds of emails to myself with notes on story openings, titles and outlines. I lost all this, plus notes about things that my son did during those early days when sleep deprivation zapped all my brain cells.

I didn't cry. I didn't panic. Instead, I got busy. That mobile cloud that I have — well, I put it to use and backed up my current computer files. This task had been on my "to do" list for weeks. I found a second email account to send items to as a back up to my main account and to keep it out of my clumsy reach.

I sought help from  other writers at the Writer Unboxed group on Facebook. Many were kind to share their techniques on saving information such as Word files, notes on cell phones, a notebook, etc. And, how those files are backed up using thumb drives, hard drives, clouds, email accounts, friends and family, etc.

The whole episode made me give a brief moment of silence for the ideas I lost. Some I will be able to create, but others will be lost forever. I guess that just leaves more room for new ideas.

Whether it's a new idea or an old one, I promise I will back it up somewhere — in the new small notebook that will fit in the diaper bag, at the new email address or on my computer or iPhone.

5 comments:

  1. So sorry that happened! I'm still trying to figure out how to use Dropbox, MobileMe, etc. to take care of this automatically from now on, but it's a big learning curve.

    Good old-fashioned notebooks start to look better, huh?

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  2. I bought a new notebook last week. I just heard about this Dropbox - it's on my to be investigated list.

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  3. That must've stunk! It made me think of my ideas...probably yours are better than mine, but only about 1/1000th of my ideas are any good. :) Sounds like you've got a plan for the future.

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  4. Yes, Anita it stunk. Some of my ideas did too. Ah, second chances.

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  5. Have you looked in the Deleted Items folder? Maybe some of your stuff can be brought back?

    Cold As Heaven

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